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I'm currently playing mostly with a Mage deck that is close to Trump's Free Mage deck, with a few differences due to cards I don't have yet and didn't want to craft so far. The deck works pretty well for me, but it still seems rather weak against rush decks.

I just started keeping statistics of my games and all my recent losses are against Hunters or Warlocks. The last game I was completely trashed by a Murloc deck.

So I'm wondering how I should change my deck to make it less vulnerable against aggro decks. I've quite a few ideas, but I don't want to weaken the deck too much against control decks.

I'm interested both in general principles on how to make a deck less vulnerable to aggro decks and specific cards that are good against aggro and would fit well into my deck.

My current deck is

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  • You have a few Taunts and several value minions you would also face vs. Aggro, I'm honestly wondering why Aggro poses such a big problem to you. The matchup should be rather equal. Maybe it's more a question of playing and less of deck building, you might generally have difficulty playing against Aggro. Have you considered watching some Streamers play on ladder (they usually face Aggro there currently) and see what kind of strategy/playstyle they're using to defeat them? – scenia Apr 24 '14 at 6:16
  • @scenia I just noticed this after I started tracking my stats recently, it probably was mostly chance that I only lost against aggro. After I posted this I lost three times in a row against control decks, against two Ragnaros and one Tirion Fordring this deck doesn't work at all if I don't draw any sheep. – Mad Scientist Apr 24 '14 at 6:30
  • @MadScientist Your deck doesn't really seem bad, seems pretty decent to me. – Waterseas Apr 24 '14 at 14:52
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Cards to consider adding vs aggro decks:

  • 1 Blizzard - I would highly recommend you put these in, due to the fact that they both freeze all your opponent's minions, AND do 2 damage to all of them, killing a large number of aggro creatures and stalling others.

  • 2 Vaporize - If you're keeping the board clear of smaller minions, this'll help you take care of bigger minions if used properly.

  • 1 Arcane Missiles - Can 2 for 1 against aggro rush decks, assist in taking down 2 toughness or greater minions. Cons - Based on RNG.

  • 2 Mirror Image AND/OR 2 Ice Barrier AND/OR 2 Frost Nova - One of the biggest counters to an aggro deck is stalling it out, especially in a Mage deck where you can pull a turn 7 flamestrike. These 3 cards are all excellent for stalling, as Mirror Image basically prevents 2 creatures from doing damage, even charge creatures, Ice Barrier, being a secret, can cause your opponent to play abnormally, such as playing a smaller minion than they would have because they're afraid of Mirror Entity. In addition, it basically heals you 8, even if you're at full health, which is pretty solid vs an aggro deck. Frost Nova is likely the weakest at stalling an aggro deck, due to not effecting charge minions at all, but is more relevant typically late game, due to effecting all of your opponents minions out currently.

  • 2 Cone of Cold - While Arcane Explosion is generally considered a bad card, Cone of Cold is relevant at times, due to the fact that those minions it doesn't kill with it's 1 damage will still be frozen for a turn, making it still a relevant card in the late game.

Cards to change out:

  • 1 Gadgetzan Auctioneer -> 1 Acolyte of Pain - Gadgetzan Auctioneer isn't necessarily guaranteed to draw you a card when you play it, and is a high costing 5 drop, with not very high toughness. Alternatively, Acolyte of Pain is almost always guaranteed to draw you a card, unless silenced or straight up destroyed, and, when combined with your hero power, will be able to trade for 2 toughness or less creatures well.

  • 1 Argent Squire -> 1 Mana Wyrm - Mana Wyrm is one of the best 1 drop minions in the game, very often 2 for 1's, or at the very least, trades up. Argent Squire CAN 2 for 1, but only against 1 toughness creatures. In addition, it doesn't have ANY impact late game, whereas a mana wyrm can.

Cards to consider taking out:

  • 1 Sunfury Protector - While not the worst card, this is the kind of card that doesn't really do anything unless you have other cards to go with it. In this case, those other cards happen to be minions. When combined with a Chillwind Yeti, or better yet, a boulderfist ogre, it can be very powerful, but without one of those, it doesn't necessarily do much. If you still like the synergy of it with minions such as these, I would recommend replacing it with Defender of Argus, as you're almost never going to be playing Sunfury Protector before turn 5 or so anyways, and Defender of Argus is more relevant with minions such as Acolyte of Pain and Mana Wyrm

  • 1 Azure Drake AND/OR 2 Boulderfist Ogres - If Aggro decks are really your only weakness, I would consider removing some of these more expensive creatures. Boulderfist Ogre is particularly useless against aggro decks, because they will just proceed to ignore your ogre, since they likely have you far lower at the point you play it than you do them, and you can only use it to kill one minion of theirs a turn.

  • great suggestions, I agree with all of them – l I Apr 24 '14 at 15:08
  • Great card swaps. But I think that 2 Blizzards is 1 to much. As the agro deck would focus on aggressive play in the early / mid game. The Blizzard costs 6 mana. And fact is, that the deck should be balanced out. Not all focused vs. agro decks. – AtlasEU Apr 25 '14 at 7:18
  • @AtlasEU Note that I meant the top list to be an 'up to' type list, but yeah, looking back at it, I do agree with the idea that only 1 blizzard should be added. – Waterseas Apr 25 '14 at 14:41
  • @Waterseas I just did some testing against a friends agro Hunter. And can vote for the following changes: Mirror Image x2 + Arcane Missiles x2 + Cone of Cold x2 + Mana Wyrm x2. We also added 2x Mogu'shan Wardens. But I dunno if they are good against other types of decks in combo with the rest. – AtlasEU Apr 25 '14 at 23:21
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    @Waterseas All I can say is just try it and see how it works for you. If you are having trouble with aggro decks it will definately help with your tempo issues. – DiabloMonkey May 1 '14 at 18:45
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You can add an Earthen Ring Farseer or two in place of a four-cost card. This is a change that Trump made during his stream and commented on as a good card against aggro decks. Your deck is heavy in fours (like Trump's was), but too light on threes.

An extra Mana Wyrm would also help. Trump mentioned many times during his stream that a starting hand with Mana Wyrm was usually a good hand.

Trump also mentioned several times on his stream that aggro decks were a hard match-up for his Mage deck. You might expect a similar problem yourself working with a similar deck.

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For my mage deck, Aggro decks are one of my easiest matchups. I'm able to control the game with cheap removal and then scale late with extra card drawing from the auctioneer.

With that many damage spells, try removing a couple of your 3,4,5,6 drop creatures for a couple of the 2,3,4 cost creatures that also increase the damage from your spells. Off the top of my head I can't remember the names.

Generally, your deck just seems kind of expensive and has a bunch of creatures that just don't synergize well with it.

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